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Catholic World News

Only 24% of Americans aware that religious freedom is 1st Amendment right

July 24, 2013

An annual survey of over 1,000 Americans has found that only 24% of respondents are able to identify religious freedom as a First Amendment right.

The survey, conducted by the Newseum Institute’s First Amendment Center, also found that only 13% of women and 6% of men believe that religious freedom is the most important freedom mentioned in the First Amendment.

“The majority of Americans (62%) agree that if a religiously affiliated group receives government funding, then the government should be able to require the group to provide health-care benefits to same-sex partners of employees, even if the religious group opposes same-sex marriages or partnerships,” the survey continued. “Sixty-eight percent of 18-30-year-olds, 62% of 31-45-year-olds, 61% of 46-60-year-olds, and 56% of Americans over 60 support this statement.”

In addition, “a majority of Americans (52%) believes that a business providing wedding services to the public should be required to serve same-sex couples, even if the business owner objects to same-sex marriage on religious grounds … Non-religious (59%) and Catholic (61%) Americans are much more likely than Protestants (39%) to believe that the government can require wedding businesses to serve same-sex couples.”

31% of those surveyed believe that religious freedom should not apply to “extreme/fringe” groups.


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  • Posted by: Defender - Jul. 24, 2013 7:05 PM ET USA

    Don't most high schools still teach American Government and isn't it required to graduate? Functionally illiterate might best describe this "me" generation.